UNBC’s first playoff game ends in defeat
For 66 minutes, the wall the UNBC Timberwolves put up in front of their goalie, Ty Venhola, withstood the punishment.
Like White Walkers in Game of Thrones, the defending champions of university men’s soccer had one goal in mind – dominance – and they never stopped pressing.
They had no dragons raining fire, but the Alberta Golden Bears brought some impressive weaponry to the soccer field Saturday afternoon in Edmonton and used it to snuff out the playoff lives of the Timberwolves in a 3-0 win.
Canada West scoring champion Ajeej Sarkaria got the Golden Bears started, scoring the only goal they would need at the 65:34 mark. Nikko Cuglietta, with his eighth goal in 11 games at 75:58, and Easton Ongaro, in the 90th minute, sealed the win for Alberta.
Venhola made eight saves in goal for the T-wolves, who qualified for the playoffs for the first time in their six-year Canada West history. UNBC’s commitment to defence allowed only three of Alberta’s shots to got through in the scoreless first half.
Golden Bears goalkeeper Connor James made four saves for the shutout.
Cheona Edzerza, a fifth-year UNBC forward, had probably the best scoring chance for the T-wolves, facing an open net with the ball on the goal line in the 60th minute, but Alberta defender Cam Sjerde got to the ball first.
The Golden Bears advanced to the U Sports Canada West final four playoffs this coming weekend in Vancouver.